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“The Public Protector must investigate R26M spent on ministers’ fuel and generators to thwart load shedding.”

The Democratic Alliance (DA) says it has written to Public Protector’s office requesting an urgent investigation into R26 million spent on fuel and generators by Public Works and Infrastructure, Minister Patricia de Lille to safeguard ministers from power outages since 2021.

DA MP Samantha Graham-Maré said this amount could not be justified when the country was facing crisis.

“The money could be used to provide electricity to hospitals, clinics and struggling small businesses,” she said.

De Lile’s department has violated sections 3 and 5 rules for executives, which states that Ministers  are responsible for costs associated with their homes, Graham-Maré explained, saying any expenses over R5 000 per month for water or electricity use should be paid by them.

She said it was absolutely appalling that Minister De Lille  prioritize her comrades instead of being proactive and using the money to ensure electricity is available at all hospitals and clinics, crime hotspots and for struggling small enterprises.

“It shows that for Minister De Lillie, the comfort and protection for the Executive is of  greater important  than the welfare South African public. Her track record since she held the portfolio, became worse, beggining with  Beit Bridge border post ‘wash line’  to crumbling SAPS facilities,” said Graham-Maré.

According to Graham-Maré Ministers found to have contravened the Guide must repay the money.

She said that government will also ensure that the money goes towards supporting vulnerable South Africans

“Nearly 4 000 government properties that could become homes for homeless South Africans but are instead becoming targets for vandals, and no progress on parliament nearly eight months after it burnt down reflects a Minister, is aligned with ANC people, and clearly out of touch with the needs of ordinary citizens,” she added.

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